Speed Reads


Inside Raqqa, the de facto capital of ISIS

The Syrian city of Raqqa has long served as the de facto capital of ISIS, solidified by the capture of the Taqba military base by the Islamic militants last month. As a result, citizens in Raqqa have been living under the most extreme and oppressive versions of sharia law, and little is known about life inside the jihadi stronghold. Now, nearly two months after Vice News gave a detailed look into the life of ISIS fighters, a report that aired on French 2 gives another look at day-to-day life as a civilian inside the repressed city.

The footage was captured secretly by a woman living in Raqqa. Despite being dressed in the full-coverage niqab required of women living in ISIS-controlled territory, the woman is reprimanded by a man on the street for showing part of her face. She also captures a woman carrying an AK-47 as she heads to the playground with her child, and others arguing with their distraught families in an internet café. Watch the full video below. --Kimberly Alters